The FSS reserves the right to change or cancel any program if necessary. In such cases, enrolled participants will be notified promptly and deposits refunded or applied to another program. Deposits for programs held as scheduled are non-refundable.
During this experiential workshop, participants are introduced to core shamanism, the universal and near-universal basic methods of the shaman to enter non-ordinary reality for problem solving, well-being and healing. Particular emphasis is put on the classic shamanic journey, one of the most remarkable visionary methods used by humans to explore the hidden universe otherwise known mainly through myth and dream. Participants are initiated into shamanic journeying, aided by drumming and movement techniques, for experiencing the shamanic state of consciousness and for awakening dormant spiritual abilities and connections with Nature.
Practice includes discussion by participants of their discoveries in shamanic journeys as well as work on personal problem solving. Participants are also provided with methods for journeying to discover and study with their own spiritual teachers in non-ordinary reality, a classic step in shamanic practice. Participants learn how shamanism can be applied in contemporary daily life to help heal one's self, others and the Planet.
Michael Harner's Basic Workshop, The Way of the Shaman, sponsored by the Foundation for Shamanic Studies, is the only acceptable prerequisite for entrance into the Foundation's advanced weekend workshops and the Two-Week and Three-Year advanced training programs.
Learning shamanism is not just a matter of acquiring methods, but also of increasing spiritual power and knowing how to use it. From the shamanic point of view, people who are not spiritually "power-filled" are prone to illness, accidents, and misfortune. Anyone who has had a traumatic experience may lose a portion of their soul, of their spiritual essence. There are also other reasons this may occur. In this workshop, participants will learn the importance of shamanic power to do successful soul retrieval. Participants will also learn how to re-empower a client's soul after it has been returned so that the client is once again spiritually power-filled, leading to greater health and well-being. This soul retrieval training is based on worldwide core principles and methods. It does not require Western psychological perspectives and practices.
We are the fortunate heirs of a great and venerable spiritual tradition, shamanism, many thousands of years old, with core principles and practices that are universal or common for one simple reason: they work. Among them is soul retrieval, found widely in shamanic cultures.
Dr. Harner learned how to do soul retrieval in 1961 while living among the Amazonian Conibo and brought it to the West. The Conibo taught him that every part of a person had its own soul, and that soul retrieval could be done for any portion of the person that had been injured or traumatized. In The Way of the Shaman (pages 71 – 72, 93, 99), he wrote of recovering “vital souls” to heal comatose persons and persons suffering from traumas, noting that this method can also be used “to heal patients by retrieving lost portions of their vital souls.”
Michael began training students in soul retrieval at least as early as June 25 - 27, 1982, as part of an Intermediate Workshop (no longer existing under that name) inside a cave in Grottoes, Virginia. Among the 31 students in that memorable location was Dana Robinson, now a longtime FSS faculty member, who recalls:
"In Grottoes, we did a considerable amount of shamanic work inside a large cave that we walked into a couple of times each day. During one session in the cave, you taught us a soul retrieval technique, and we helped a young man who had spent some time in a mental institution years before.
I remember other events from that weekend 30 years ago, but the soul retrieval journey, the beauty of that cave, and the great teacher that we had stand out the most in my memory."
Prerequisite FSS Workshops: The Way of the Shaman (the Basic workshop); AND 1. These two advanced weekend workshops: Shamanic Extraction Healing and Shamanism, Dying, and Beyond; OR2. Completion of the FSS Three-Year Program of Advanced Initiations in Shamanism and Shamanic Healing; OR 3. Completion of the Two Week Shamanic Healing Intensive
Creativity is so ancient that it is at once fundamental and complex, even a driving force in our lives. Shamanism brings a fresh approach to Westerners for cultivating their creative potential. In this workshop, based on years of research, participants will have the opportunity to enhance their creativity through the practice of shamanic methods. Selected historical and anthropological examples will illustrate connections between shamanism and creative abilities, and a variety of specific shamanic exercises will be taught that participants can apply to their personal lives.
One of the classic tasks of the shaman is to journey into non-ordinary reality in order to obtain answers to questions, both at the request of others and for one's self. Participants in the workshop have the opportunity to engage in divination journeys for each other as well as for themselves and to gain the experience in using various time-tested shamanic divination techniques. In the shamanic search to become persons of knowledge, they learn, as shamans have from time immemorial how to converse with plant as well as animal species, how to use quartz crystals and how to seek and receive revelatory knowledge from visionary sources.
In this unique experiential workshop you will have the opportunity to explore the nature, meaning, and use of dreams among shamanic peoples, with dreamwork practices from a range of cultures. Researched and developed by Michael Harner, subjects to be covered include shamanic dream theory and big dreams, as well as dreams and the soul, spirits, shamanic journeys, the Dreamtime, and the vision quest. You will have the opportunity to apply the knowledge to contemporary life, including the use of dreams in divination, health, and healing. Pre-requisite: The Way of the Shaman ® Basic Workshop.
Participants learn ways of dealing with the issue of dying and the destiny of souls from a shamanic perspective. The workshop is both for those who wish to learn for themselves and for those who wish to help others who are in terminal situations or who have already passed on. Experiences undertaken include learning how to become experientially familiar with the after-death realms, helping a person using shamanic journeying, completing unfinished business, helping a person to cross over, and classic psychopomp (soul conducting) work.
Participants will be initiated into the extraction method of healing, including how to see, sense and remove localized spiritual illness and pain. The Extraction Healing Training Workshop is designed exclusively for people who want to learn shamanic healing work. The training is not designed for people looking for personal healing themselves. Before enrolling in this training workshop, please make sure that you have been having success in contacting your power animals and/or teachers on your own and that you feel confident in your journey skills.
From ancient times, shamans have worked with the spirits of nature for healing, survival, and knowledge. By learning from the plants and animals, from the rocks and mountains, from the winds and water, and from the sun, moon and stars, shamans helped their peoples live in harmony with the universe. In a world now out of balance, the way of the shaman can teach how again to respect nature, our Planet, and its inhabitants at a deep spiritual level. As our ancestors everywhere once knew, our survival depends on the survival of other species. By working together intensively through shamanic journeys and other spiritual experiences, we will dedicate ourselves to working in both non-ordinary and ordinary reality to restore and maintain a living Planet.